On his farewell tour, the producer and composer ROY AYERS will be opening this year's XJAZZ! FESTIVAL 2023 as one of the last great jazz prophets.
The Godfather of Neo-Soul.
A prolific composer and vibraphonist, Roy Ayers career spans six decades.
Ayers' has released over 30 albums and his work has been sampled over 500 times whilst his Roy Ayers Ubiquity project has been sampled over 400 times.
Perhaps Roy’s karmic destiny as a vibraphonist was by his parents’ decision to allow him to attend a concert featuring the great Lionel Hampton’s Big Band. During “Hamps” customary stroll down the aisle to thank his audience for attending, he noticed an ecstatic five-year-old boy. So impressed was "Hamps" by the child’s ebullience he walked over and presented young Roy Ayers Jr. with the gift of a lifetime; a pair of vibe mallets.
Roy Ayers started his career in 1962 and while his work in the 1960s was distinguished in itself, he became a vital part of Herbie Mann’s band late in the decade. After going solo in the early 1970’s he really began to flourish, establishing the eclectic ear that would make him a commercial smash for much of the decade and an inspiration to house, hip-hop, and acid jazz artists for decades afterwards.
In 1973, he scored the acclaimed soundtrack to the Blaxploitation film Coffy starring Pam Grier. In the late 1970s, he toured Nigeria and recorded with Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti. He produced and released artists such as RAMP, Sylvia Striplin, Bobbi Humphrey, Eighties Ladies, and is cited as a major influence by the likes of Erykah Badu, Jamiroquai, and Pharrell Williams with his jazz-funk vibes.
Ayers became a revered icon in hip-hop and R&B circles across generations – from collaborating with Guru and The Roots in the early-mid ’90s to Erykah Badu, Talib Kweli, Kanye West & Will Downing in the early ’00s to Tyler, the Creator a few years back.
The evening will be opened by the emerging young drummer Roni Kaspi.
The drummer of Avishai Cohen Trio, is starting her own project. As is the case with many outstandingly talented and highly trained artists of her generation, Roni Kaspi’s profound set of jazz skills & chops is above all the starting point into a boundless musical world. With her new Trio she consistently seeks her own sound and vibe as a producer, songwriter, and singer of edgy, cool, cosmopolitan indie pop. Influences are Rock, Hiphop, Jazz, middle eastern music and energetic Grooves.
The monday concerts are included in the XJAZZ! FESTIVAL 2023 FULL PASS!